Before Television

The mailman usually just puts mail into the box and drove off. Today he beeped the horn. Grandma came out, took a package and went into the house. I ran behind, A package – that had never happened before. Grandpa was plowing in the field. She went immediately to the bedroom and closed the door.

“You hush, child, if Grandpa wants you to see something that will be his decision. This was down in the summer, too early for Christmas, what could possibly be in the box?

That evening just after dark, my sister and I, along with the Wlsonkids, were playing in our front yard. My sister yelled and pointed in the direction of the porch. Grandpa and My sister yelled and pointed in the direction of the porch. Grandpa and Mr. Wilson had what I thought was the largest lightning bug in the world. We kids went running.The lightning bug turned out to be the greatest invention to come along since Grandma’s apple peeler. It was a flashlight.

Mr. Wilson told Grandpa he had one when he was a soldier in the war, It had something called batteries inside that made it work. Told Grandpa how you had to have them just right, upside down the world never work.

Already I figured Mr. Wilson right up there with Grandpa an some smart man.

He pushed a little button on the side and it went off. He unscrewed the end to check the batteries. We all stepped back. Just like Mr. Wilson said, they wouldn’t work upside dow. Wow, was he smart!

Grandpa danced the light across the front yard. The hound barked, the kittens tried to catch it. We laughed.

We went to see creatures of the night. The great beam caught the old owl we had been hearing. A frog jumped in the spotlight. Grandpa saw an opossum but we never did. He let us touch this magic wand. When my turn came, I shined towards the heavens. I was in touch with the stars.

Inside, we turned off all the lights. Grandpa passed the light under each of our chins and we made scary faces. Jenny cried, Grandma made us stop.

We laughed.

Grandma held the light while Grandpa made an eagle fly on the wall, then a chicken pecking and a spider walking.

We laughed.

Dinner was always at seven. It was nearly 10.